Subversive Historian – 01/13/09

Johnny Cash At Folsom Prison

Forty-one years ago on this day in people’s music history, Johnny Cash performed his famed concert at Folsom State Prison in California. On January 13th, 1968, the iconoclastic singer changed music history when he recorded two live sets before a crowd of the incarcerated. Cash’s label, Columbia Records, had been opposed to his idea of releasing a live album from the prison for years when a change in personnel finally cleared the way. Backed by June Carter and the Tennessee Three, Cash opened his performance with his song “Folsom Prison Blues.” He completed the set by mixing in numerous songs about life in prison establishing the singer’s rapport with society’s banished. The record, “At Folsom Prison,” was released five months after becoming one of the most important albums of all time.

Cash’s performance was surely not one to be missed, although I’m not sure I would have wanted a front row seat!


One response to “Subversive Historian – 01/13/09

  1. I was just about to say that I couldn’t think of anyone else who performs at prisons — but then I recalled a scene from “Metallica: Some Kinda Monster”.

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